Egypt's advice to Lebanon: Hang tough in negotiations with Israel. Such talk is behind Lebanon's stiff resistance to Israeli pressure for measures to normalize relations in return for a phased withdrawal of Israeli troops now in Lebanon. Lebanon has indicated its patience is running out, and that it will seek new moves from Washington if positive results are not forthcoming.

When Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak met with Lebanese President Amin Gemayel in New Delhi earlier this month, Mr. Mubarak cautioned against establishing more than the liaison offices suggested in US proposals, and against going beyond the exchange of tourists.

Egypt views the Lebanon talks as a roadblock for wider Israeli-Arab talks. But officials there say they would rather have the Lebanese problem solved than have an imbalanced agreement that could backfire once it is implemented.

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Egyptian officials regard the normalization of relations with Israel as full of endless problems and domestic pressure, which Gemayel's fragile government might not be able to control.m

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